The Ringling International Arts Festival Will Totally Blow Your Mind This Year

Fall is in the air. The stores are full of pumpkins waiting to be carved, and all your coffee options seem to contain pumpkin spice. But you can experience a little other flavor at the Ringling International Arts Festival (RIAF). October 15th through October 18th, 2014, you can enjoy full-day celebrations at The Ringling Art Museum of music, dance, theater, and food. In between museum tours and live stage performers, you will be able to sample light bites and lively libations and take in a collection of special events. The schedule is as follows: Wednesday, October 15th, from 10am until5pm Enjoy a champagne toast at 6pm, and then take in an opening night performance at 7pm from your choice of The Pedrito Martinez Group, Tangram, or Duo Amal: Bishara Haroni and Yaron Kohlberg. Finally, at 8:45pm, join in the lively Courtyard Celebration featuring Bolero Sarasota and a spectacular fireworks display. Hors d’oeuvres, beer, wine, soft drinks, and a cash bar will be available. Thursday, October 16th, and Friday, October 17th, from 5pm until 8pm Enjoy the unparalleled gorgeous views of coastal Florida set to music with Jazz Sunsets by the Bay. Food and beverages will be available for purchase under a tent by Sarasota Bay. Thursday, October 16th, Friday, October 17th, and Saturday, October 18th, at 3pm Gatehouse Gatherings are the perfect place to whet your appetite and mix and mingle between performances throughout the RIAF. Meet up at the Gatehouse Patio at The Ringling Visitors Pavilion and meet other festival patrons as you snack on small bites and sip refreshing drinks. More substantial food and drink will be available for purchase. Thursday, October 16th, at 8pm:  Friday, October 17th, at 5pm: Saturday, October 18th, at 2pm Duo Amal: Bishara Haroni and Yaron Kohlberg The two preeminent pianists of their generation in their respective homelands (Israel and Palestine) come together in a breathtaking collaboration that encompasses everything from the baroque to the modern period and includes works by both Israeli and Palestinian composers. Truly stunning. Thursday, October 16th, at 2pm and 8pm: Friday, October 17th, at 5pm: and Saturday, October 18th, at 2pm Keigwin + Company Artistic director Larry Keigwin presents astonishing feats of dancing in a show full of explosive, technical, contemporary dance. Thursday, October 16th, at 5pm: Friday, October 17th, at 2pm and 8pm: and Saturday, October 18th, at 5pm Vijay Iyar Trio This trio, one of the most celebrated jazz ensembles of our time create powerful new music that is strongly rooted in groove and pulse, yet still rhythmically intricate and highly interactive. Thursday, October 16th, at 5pm: Friday, October 17th, at 2pm and 8pm: and Saturday, October 18th, at 5pm The Pedrito Martinez Group Afro-Cuban percussionist Pedrito Martinex (who has been described as having “quick hands” and “a voice like lightning” leads a quartet of Rhumba virtuosi from Venezuela, Peru, and Cuba in a musically innovative, genre-bending performance with incomparable soul. Thursday, October 16th, at 5pm: Friday, October 17th, at 2pm and 8pm: and Saturday, October 18th, at 5pm Tangram Ballet and circus artistry collide in this sexy, imaginative, and complex performance that blurs the lines between dance, new circus, and physical thatre. Cristiana Casadio and Stefan Sing from Berlin have composed and perform a compelling production in the beauty of human struggle. Thursday, October 16th, at 2pm and 8pm: Friday, October 17th, at 5pm: and Saturday, October 18th, at 10am and 2pm The Table Most puppet shows are intended for children. This, most assuredly, is not. Moses the puppet is having an existential crisis and its making him cranky. His resulting show from Great Britain is full of whimsy and brilliance. Thursday, October 16th, at 5pm: Friday, October 17th, at 2pm and 8pm: and Saturday, October 18th, at 2pm The Intergalactic Nemesis This all ages show is geared to 7 to 10 year olds but will take anyone’s breath away. This one-of-a-kind mash-up of radio drama and storytelling brought to life by three actors, one Foley artist, one keyboardist, and thousands of sound cues and sound effects will blow your mind whether you ara a child (or just still have a curious inner child). For tickets and more information, please visit the Ringling International Arts Festival (RIAF) website.